Switch to Private Browsing on iPhone with the new Safari

Safari has gotten a major overhaul with iOS 15, and while there are a number of improvements and changes, some features aren’t found where they used to be. Read along for a look at how to switch to iPhone Private Browsing in Safari with iOS 15.

One of the biggest changes with Safari in iOS 15 is the default address/search bar is now on the bottom of the screen. There’s also a new tab/group tabs experience and more.

While some features are revertible (like changing back to a top bar design), some have permanently changed. With Private Browsing, iOS 15 will probably be a “who moved my cheese?” moment for a lot of users as it’s more buried than in iOS 14 and earlier.

As a refresher, here’s how Apple describes Private Browsing mode:

Safari won’t remember the pages you visited, your search history, or your AutoFill information after you close a tab in Private Browsing Mode.

Going beyond what Private Browsing offers, Apple is also launched iCloud Private Relay with iOS 15, which will be available on iPhone, iPad, and Mac.


  • On your iPhone running iOS 15, open Safari
  • Do a long-press on the two-square icon in the bottom right corner (top right corner for landscape view)
  • Choose New Private Tab


  • In iOS 15, open Safari
  • Tap the two-square icon in the bottom right corner (top right corner if using landscape view)
  • Tap the “1 Tab” button (or “X Tabs”)
  • Choose Private
  • Tap the + icon in bottom corner
  • You can tell you’re using Private Browsing as the address/search turns dark
  • Follow the same steps and tap Private again to stop using the feature

Here’s how that looks on iPhone:

Now, just tap the + icon. When using light mode in iOS 15, the address/search bar will turn from white to gray, and when using dark mode, it will turn from gray to black while using iPhone Private Browsing.

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